Former ICAP broker Darrell Read has been acquitted of accusations related to manipulating the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor), as the decision to bring the case was slammed.
Yesterday, the jury acquitted five other ex-brokers and determined that Read was not guilty on one count of charges against him, although it was yet to reach a decision on a second count.
The brokers who were acquitted yesterday were Colin Goodman and Danny Wilkinson, both former Icap workers; Noel Cryan, formerly of Tullett Prebon; and Terry Farr and James Gilmour, who both worked for RP Martin.
The jury initially retired to consider its verdict on Tuesday.
The trial was brought as a result of an investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), which alleged that the six men had conspired with ex-trader Tom Hayes to manipulate Libor.
Hayes, who used to work at UBS and Citigroup, was convicted last August, although his prison sentence was subsequently reduced from 14 years to 11 on appeal.
According to the Press Association, Goodman's solicitor issued a statement yesterday stating: "We can only reiterate what his counsel told the jury, that the SFO case was a complete shambles and should never have been brought."
However, responding to the jury's decision yesterday, David Green, director of the SFO, defended the decision to try the case, remarking:
The key issue in this trial was whether these defendants were party to a dishonest agreement with Tom Hayes. By their verdicts the jury have said that they could not be sure that this was the case. Nobody could sensibly suggest that these charges should not have been brought and considered by a jury.
Meanwhile, law firm Bark & Co yesterday issued a statement on behalf of their client Cryan that said he was "delighted" with the verdict, and continued: "Mr Cryan is relieved finally to be able to put this matter behind him, and looks forward to being able to get on with his life after two years with this hanging over his head."
The case was heard at London's Southwark Crown Court by Mr Justice Hamblen, and the trial formally started almost four months ago, in October of last year.